Meaning of GO in English


/ gəʊ; NAmE goʊ/ verb , noun

■ verb

( goes / gəʊz; NAmE goʊz/ went / went; NAmE / gone / gɒn; NAmE gɔːn; gɑːn/)

HELP NOTE : Been is used as the past participle of go when sb has gone somewhere and come back.



to move or travel from one place to another :

[ v + adv. / prep. ]

She went into her room and shut the door behind her.

He goes to work by bus.

I have to go to Rome on business.

She has gone to China (= is now in China or is on her way there) .

She has been to China (= she went to China and has now returned) .

I think you should go to the doctor's.

Are you going home for Christmas?

[ v to inf ]

She has gone to see her sister this weekend.

HELP NOTE : In spoken English go can be used with and plus another verb to show purpose or to tell sb what to do:

I'll go and answer the door.

Go and get me a drink!

The and is sometimes left out, especially in NAmE :

Go ask your mom!


[ v ] go (to sth) (with sb) to move or travel, especially with sb else, to a particular place or in order to be present at an event :

Are you going to Dave's party?

Who else is going?

His dog goes everywhere with him.


[+ adv. / prep. ] to move or travel in a particular way or over a particular distance :

[ v ]

He's going too fast.

[ vn ]

We had gone about fifty miles when the car broke down.


[ v -ing , usually + adv. / prep. ] go flying, singing, etc. to move in a particular way or while doing sth else :

The car went skidding off the road into a ditch.

She went sobbing up the stairs.

She crashed into a waiter and his tray of drinks went flying.



[ v ] to leave one place in order to reach another

SYN depart :

I must be going now.

They came at six and went at nine.

Has she gone yet?

He's been gone an hour (= he left an hour ago) .

When does the train go?


[ v ] go on sth to leave a place and do sth different :

to go on a journey / a tour / a trip / a cruise

Richard has gone on leave for two weeks.



[ v ] go to sth to visit or attend a place for a particular purpose :

( BrE )

I have to go to hospital for an operation.

( NAmE )

I have to go to the hospital.

to go to prison (= to be sent there as punishment for a crime)

Do you go to church (= regularly attend church services) ?



go for sth to leave a place or travel to a place in order to take part in an activity or a sport :

to go for a walk / drive / swim / run

Shall we go for a drink (= at a pub or bar) after work?

I have to go shopping this afternoon.

We're going sailing on Saturday.



[ v , usually + adv. / prep. ] to be sent or passed somewhere :

I want this memo to go to all managers.



[ v + adv. / prep. ] go (from ... ) to ... to lead or extend from one place to another :

I want a rope that will go from the top window to the ground.

Where does this road go?



[ v + adv. / prep. ] to have as a usual or correct position; to be placed :

This dictionary goes on the top shelf.

Where do you want the piano to go (= be put) ?


[ v ] will / would not ~ (in / into sth) used to say that sth does / did not fit into a particular place or space :

My clothes won't all go in that one suitcase.

He tried to push his hand through the gap but it wouldn't go.



go (into sth) if a number will go into another number, it is contained in that number an exact number of times :

[ v - n ]

3 into 12 goes 4.

[ v ]

7 into 15 won't go.

( NAmE )

7 into 15 doesn't go.

7 won't go into 15.



[ v + adv. / prep. ] used to talk about how well or badly sth makes progress or succeeds :

'How did your interview go?' 'It went very well, thank you.'

Did everything go smoothly?

How's it going (= is your life enjoyable, successful, etc. at the moment) ?

The way things are going the company will be bankrupt by the end of the year.



[ v ] go to / into sth | go out of sth used in many expressions to show that sb/sth has reached a particular state / is no longer in a particular state :

She went to sleep.

That colour has gone out of fashion.


linking verb [ v - adj ] to become different in a particular way, especially a bad way :

to go bald / blind / mad / bankrupt, etc.

Her hair is going grey .

This milk has gone sour .

The children went wild with excitement.

➡ note at become


[ v - adj ] to live or move around in a particular state :

to go naked / barefoot

She cannot bear the thought of children going hungry.


[ v - adj ] go unnoticed, unreported, etc. to not be noticed, reported, etc. :

Police are worried that many crimes go unreported.



used to talk about what tune or words a song or poem has or what happens in a story :

[ v + adv. / prep. ]

How does that song go?

I forget how the next line goes.

[ v that ]

The story goes that she's been married five times.



to make a particular sound or movement :

[ v - n ]

The gun went 'bang'.

[ v + adv. / prep. ]

She went like this with her hand.


[ v ] to be sounded as a signal or warning :

The whistle went for the end of the game.



[ v speech ] ( informal ) (used when telling a story) to say :

I asked 'How much?' and he goes, 'Fifty' and I go, 'Fifty? You must be joking!'



[ v ] to start an activity :

I'll say 'One, two, three, go!' as a signal for you to start.

As soon as he gets here we're ready to go.



[ v ] if a machine goes , it works :

This clock doesn't go.



[ v ] to stop existing; to be lost or stolen

SYN disappear :

Has your headache gone yet?

I left my bike outside the library and when I came out again it had gone.



[ v ] sb/sth must / has to / can ~ used to talk about wanting to get rid of sb/sth :

The old sofa will have to go.

He's useless—he'll have to go.



[ v ] to get worse; to become damaged or stop working correctly :

Her sight is beginning to go.

His mind is going (= he is losing his mental powers) .

I was driving home when my brakes went.



[ v ] to die. People say 'go' to avoid saying 'die' :

You can't take your money with you when you go.



[ v ] go (on sth) when money goes , it is spent or used for sth :

I don't know where the money goes!

Most of my salary goes on the rent.

The money will go to finance a new community centre.


[ v ] go (to sb) (for sth) to be sold :

We won't let the house go for less than $200 000.

There was usually some bread going cheap (= being sold cheaply) at the end of the day.


[ v + adv. / prep. ] to be willing to pay a particular amount of money for sth :

He's offered £3 000 for the car and I don't think he'll go any higher.

I'll go to $1 000 but that's my limit.



[ v to inf ] to help; to play a part in doing sth :

This all goes to prove my theory.

It (= what has just happened) just goes to show you can't always tell how people are going to react.



be going [ v ] ( informal ) to be available :

There just aren't any jobs going in this area.



[ v + adv. / prep. ] used to talk about how quickly or slowly time seems to pass :

Hasn't the time gone quickly?



[ v ] ( informal ) to use a toilet :

Do you need to go, Billy?


Most idioms containing go are at the entries for the nouns and adjectives in the idioms, for example go it alone is at alone .  

- anything goes

- as people, things, etc. go

- be going on (for) sth

- be going to do sth

- don't go doing sth

- enough / something to be going on with

- go all out for sth | go all out to do sth

- go and do sth

- go off on one

- go on (with you)

- (have) a lot, nothing, etc. going for you

- no go

- not (even) go there

- to go

- what goes around comes around

- where does sb go from here?

- who goes there?


- go about

- go about sth

- go about sth

- go after sb

- go after sb/sth

- go against sb

- go against sb/sth

- go against sth

- go ahead

- go ahead (with sth)

- go along

- go along with sb/sth

- go around / round

- go around / round (to ... )

- go at sb

- go at sth

- go away

- go back

- go back (to ... )

- go back (to sth)

- go back on sth

- go back to sth

- go before

- go before sb/sth

- go beyond sth

- go by

- go by sth

- go down

- go down (from ... )

- go down (in sth)

- go down (on sb)

- go down (to sb)

- go down (to ... ) (from ... )

- go down (with sb)

- go down with sth

- go for sb

- go for sb/sth

- go for sth

- go in

- go in for sth

- go in with sb

- go into sth

- go off

- go off (on sb)

- go off sb/sth

- go off with sb

- go off with sth

- go on

- go on (ahead)

- go on sth

- go on (about sb/sth)

- go on (at sb)

- go on (with sth)

- go on doing sth

- go on to sth

- go on to do sth

- go out

- go out (of sth)

- go out of sb/sth

- go out to sb

- go out with sb | go out (together)

- go over sth

- go over (to ... )

- go over to sb/sth

- go over to sth

- go over (with sb)

- go round

- go round (to ... )

- go through

- go through sth

- go through with sth

- go to sb/sth

- go together

- go towards sth

- go under

- go up

- go up (to ... )

- go up (to ... ) (from ... )

- go with sb

- go with sth

- go without (sth)

■ noun ( pl. goes /gəʊz/)


[ C ] ( BrE ) (also turn NAmE , BrE ) a person's turn to move or play in a game or an activity :

Whose go is it?

It's your go.

'How much is it to play?' 'It's 50p a go.'

Can I have a go on your new bike?


[ C ] ( BrE ) (also try NAmE , BrE ) an attempt at doing sth :

It took three goes to get it right.

I doubt if he'll listen to advice from me, but I'll give it a go (= I'll try but I don't think I will succeed) .


[ U ] ( BrE ) energy and enthusiasm :

Mary's always got plenty of go.

—see also get-up-and-go


[ U ] a Japanese game played on a board


- at one go

- be a go

- be all go

- be on the go

- first, second, etc. go

- have a go

- have a go (at sth / at doing sth)

- have a go at sb

- have sth on the go

- in one go

- make a go of sth

—more at leave verb , let verb



Old English gān , of Germanic origin; related to Dutch gaan and German gehen ; the form went was originally the past tense of wend .

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.